FCC investigating throttling practices of all major U.S carriers

Alex Wagner
Editorial Director of News and Content from  Omaha, NE
| August 8, 2014

Unlimited data

Verizon’s recent 4G LTE Network Optimization policy caught the attention of the FCC, with Chairman Tom Wheeler describing the effort as “disturbing.” As a result of Verizon’s move, the FCC is now investigating how the other major U.S. carriers throttle users’ speeds.

FCC Chairman said today that he’s not exactly a fan of Verizon’s explanation that it can throttle users’ speeds because other carriers are doing the same. “‘All the kids do it’ was never something that worked for me when I was growing up,” Wheeler explained. The Chairman went on to say that he’s concerned that these throttling practices are changing to a business issue rather than a technology one and that carriers are choosing subscribers based on the carriers’ “economic relationship” with them.

While Wheeler didn’t disclose exactly what he wrote to AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile, an FCC representative said that those three got the same questions as Verizon.

The major carriers used to offer unlimited, throttle-feee data usage. However, as data use grew and things like voice and text usage dropped, the operators changed how they offer data. Many are now throttling the speeds of their heaviest users, but the FCC is concerned that the carriers are slowing speeds based on the plans that they have rather than any technological issues that heavy users may cause.

What do you all think of the carriers’ throttling practices? Have you ever had your data speeds slowed?

Via Reuters